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CHATTER: VENGER IS LEAVING TAFT.

Byline: ERIK BOAL Special to the Daily News

Greg Venger's dedication to the Taft High of Woodland Hills girls' soccer team helped turn the Toreadors from a struggling program into a postseason qualifier the past four years.

Unfortunately for Taft, Venger's passion for baseball, which led to him being the recent hire as coach at Cleveland of Reseda, led to his resignation as Toreadors coach.

``Obviously, being the new varsity baseball coach at Cleveland, I could not do both,'' said Venger, who led Taft - which had five total victories in the three seasons before he took over -- to a 49-36-12 record in his four years.

Venger said no replacement has been named, but he believes Taft is looking for someone on campus to fill the vacancy.

Elizabeth Olear has achieved her share of individual success on the track, winning Southern Section and Masters titles during her career at Louisville of Woodland Hills.

The USC-bound sprinter contributed to the most impressive relay performance of her young career Saturday at the inaugural Caribbean Scholastic Invitational in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Olear teamed with Bianca Knight (Ridgeland, Miss.), Brandy Cross (Missouri City, Texas) and Shalina Clarke (Evanston, Ill.) to lead the U.S. to victory in the 400-meter relay in 44.29 seconds, the fastest junior (under-20) time in the world this year.

Olear was the lone California female on the roster of 28 athletes selected by the National Scholastic Sports Federation.

Olear and Knight are two of the six athletes in the 400 relay group set to compete at the IAAF World Junior Championships Aug. 15-20 in Beijing, China.

Notre Dame of Sherman Oaks graduate Rodney Glass has been selected Div. III State Boys' Athlete of the Year by Cal-Hi Sports.

Glass, the Daily News' Male Athlete of the Year, won state track titles in the 100-meter dash (10.52) and the 400 relay (41.27). The Arizona State- bound standout rushed for 2,113 yards and scored 38 touchdowns to lead the Knights to their fourth consecutive Southern Section Div. III final.

Other finalists in Div. III were Crespi of Encino's Sione Fua and Matt Wabby, and Harvard-Westlake of Studio City's Alex Stepheson.

Valencia's Teddy Goetz, Taft of Woodland Hills' Jamere Holland and Hart of Newhall's Matt Valaika were finalists in Div. I, as was Westlake's Jeff Rapoport in Div. II.

Oaks Christian of Westlake Village's Jimmy Clausen and Marc Tyler, Chatsworth's Mike Moustakas and Valencia's Shane Vereen were candidates for the state's top junior athlete and Moorpark's Darrell Scott was a finalist for the state's sophomore award.

Former St. Francis of La Canada Flintridge and Cal Lutheran standout Jason Hirsh pitched a scoreless first inning to lead the U.S. to an 8-5 victory Sunday over the World All-Stars at the eighth annual XM Satellite Radio Futures Game at PNC Park in Pittsburgh.

Hirsh will also represent the Pacific Coast League against the International League All-Stars on Wednesday in Toledo, Ohio.

Former Lancaster JetHawks shortstop Stephen Drew, now playing for the Arizona Diamondbacks' Triple-A affiliate Tucson Sidewinders, went 1 for 3 and scored a run for the U.S.

erik.boal@dailynews.com

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Article Details
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Jul 11, 2006
Words:525
Previous Article:CSUN: CANDIDATE DROPS OUT.
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